Thursday 06 April 2017, 09:59

FIFA celebrates International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

  • April 6 is the United Nations’ International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

  • The day recognises the power of sport in promoting peace and its ability to inspire

  • FIFA’s support of human development and peace range from the #ENDViolence campaign to the FIFA Diversity Award

In 2013, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 6 April as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace to celebrate the contribution of sports and physical activity to education, human development, healthy lifestyles and a peaceful world. Since then, the date has been inserted in the official UN calendar of international days and is celebrated annually.

As football’s world governing body, FIFA commemorates this day and the power of football to contribute to human development and peace. In the past year, FIFA has supported campaigns and recognised organisations that have contributed to these causes by using football as a tool for positive change around the world.

Here are some of the initiatives that FIFA recently participated in:

FIFA Diversity AwardIn September 2016, FIFA presented its inaugural Diversity Award that recognises outstanding organisations, group initiatives and football personalities that are standing up for diversity and inspire unity, solidarity and equality among all people. Indian NGO Slum Soccer was the inaugural recipient of the FIFA Diversity Award.

FIFA Conference for Equality and InclusionLast month at the Home of FIFA in Zurich, Switzerland, the third annual FIFA Conference for Equality and Inclusion brought together some of the world’s strongest voices in the fight for a fair, non-discriminatory society. Themed “Making Equality a Reality", conference representatives identified the many steps that still need to be taken, particularly to close the existing gap between men and women.

Hope for Al Zaatari refugeesFleeing the horrors of the war in Syria, tens of thousands of Syrian refugees live in the Al Zaatari camp in Jordan. As part of the build-up to the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Jordan 2016, girls from the camp took part in football matches and got an up close look at the U-17 Women’s World Cup trophy during a special event in August 2016. Then on 30 September 2016, 250 girls from the camp were invited to the opening day of the tournament at the Amman International Stadium.

#ENDviolence campaignAs part of the legacy programme for the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Papua New Guinea 2016, the #ENDviolence campaign focused awareness on ending violence towards women and children in the country. The campaign aimed to develop respect, understanding and tolerance among girls and boys, women and men and the community as a whole, with the overall goal of reducing risk factors associated with gender-based violence in Pacific nations like Papua New Guinea.